Getting firsthand information from an actual car owner is one sure way to get an idea of car performance once it leaves the lot. Autobytel features real consumer reviews that give the unbiased experience of a car.
2002 Jeep Liberty - Limited Edition 4x4
Pros: remote opening rear door.
Cons: That the head lights do not have day light running lights and you have to remember to turn them off when you park.
Advice: Get the V-6 engine.I have driven this vehicle in all kinds of freeway and city driving and it has been wonderful. It has plenty of power for merging onto freeways. I have towed a small trailer and the tow package worked great. The fit and finish of the vehicle is excellent. I have truly enjoyed the Liberty and am looking forward to the first snow, so I can try out the four wheel drive.
2002 Toyota Sienna - LE
Pros: The seating and road handling.
Cons: The dealer and Toyota's lack of response in resolving simple problems.
Advice: Make sure the vehicle is 100% before you buy it. Find a good dealer and document any problems, don't be rushed. Check for damaged interior plastic parts.This van drives great. Like a car. It's fun to drive and offers most of the comforts of a car.
2002 Saturn S-Series - SL2 (M5) Sedan
Pros: Handles nice
Cons: They seem to cut corners on some items
Advice: Get it! Great priceNice to drive, fun responsive and smooth.
2002 Kia Sedona - EX
Pros: Quiet ride and engine performance (acceleration/hill climbing etc.)
Cons: Though the rear seat is comfortable I wish it had the hide-away feature that Mazda MPV and Honda Odyssey have.
Advice: Due to supply and demand most dealers are asking MSRP, beware those asking even more.Earlier this year we purchased a Hyndai Santa Fe, which we are very happy with. That experience made us willing to look at another Korean manufacturer. The Sedona EX is very nicely equipped, with almost every option already included. One thing that stood out during our test drive was how exceptionally quiet the vehicle is. The 3.5 liter V6 performs nicely on steep grades (important here in Colorado), and is one of the factors that influenced us to select the Sedona over the Mazda MPV (2.5 liter engine). Gas mileage is not its strongest point though, as it appears poorer than other 3.5s on the market, such as the Honda Odyssey. The 10 year 100,000 mile powertrain warranty is a definite selling point. The driver sets high relative to the dash, and has a good view and sense of the location of the front end when parking and maneuvering (not the case in many minivans). The shift lever for the 5-speed automatic is located on the dash/console. We found it convenient yet out of the way. It provides a comfortable, yet stick shift-like control of the transmission. One unusual feature was the number of storage compartments, in addition to the glove compartment. I think I remember at least three. Regarding seating, the fully adjustable 8-way driver's seat and 4-way front passenger's seats are very comfortable. Middle and rear passengers' seats are also comfortable for adults. The only thing I'd change would be to have the hide-away rear seating configuration that MPV and Odyssey have. The two places I rated the Sedona less than 100 were quality and appearance. That is not due to identified flaws, just it is difficult to rate quality without including durability, which we don't know yet. Regarding appearance it is nice, but to me does not stand out anymore than most minivans. After all folks, it is a minivan. ;-) Though dealers (including the Autobytel referral) are asking MSRP due to limited supply, the Sedona is priced very competitively, far less than its Honda and Toyota counterparts. At this point we have not purchased yet, but believe the Sedona may currently be the best value in a minivan.
2002 Mercedes-Benz C-Class - C230 Coupe
Pros: scrolling dash information, safety features
Cons: smallish engine
Advice: Ask about all the features and prices before you end negotiationsSafe and stylish. Everything you expect from a Mercedes.
2002 Chrysler Town and Country - EX FWD
Pros: Power sliding side and rear doors
Cons: Operability of the delayed headlght switch
Advice: Don't hesitate-get one. And get one with the 3.8L engine. You won't regret it.I am extremely pleased with the vehicle. My only minor problem to date is one where the fuel guage does not register correctly. There is more fuel in the tank than is shown on the guage, and the computer is also confused, thinking there is less than there really is when computing miles range and miles left until empty. Probably a defective sending unit in the tank which I will have addressed at the first scheduled maintenance visit.
2002 Saturn S-Series - SC2 (M5) Coupe
Pros: CD Player Standard
Cons: Prefer MP3 CD Player instead
Advice: Leather interior is nice.Did not test drive, my 3rd Saturn and handles and operates very similar to SL2 models previously owned.